These cookies were intended as a thank you gift but instead they turned into ‘test cookies’ … code word for cookies that didn’t turn out as planned. I aim for perfection and crisp, clear designs and these cookies fell short. No worry … my cookie tasters are always happy to eat my mistakes!

Remember when I first tried my hand at decorating with stencils using the Wilton Airbrush Mist? I Simply sprayed the color over the cookies and they turn out perfectly. Remember when I was so excited to try out my new airbrush machine? Then the post about the learning curve associated with the airbrush machine and stencils? Well, I still need more practice … ugh!

See how many of these cookies are blurred in places? It seems to be that the stencil is lifting up during the airbrushing process … frustrating! I know I set the stencil nice and taut over the cookie using magnets to keep in place [sorry no photos; these were done after sunset and incandescent light makes for poor photos]. See similar photo below.

So, I viewed demonstration videos by The Cookie Countess to pick up some pointers. The Bearfoot Baker recently published a timely, new post with photos and video demonstrating the airbrushing technique. It turns out that it is all about the angle. I was incorrectly holding the airbrush gun at a 45-degree angle which allows just enough air to slightly lift the stencil causing the blur and poor results. Hillary at The Cookie Countess holds the airbrush gun at about a 70-degree angle and Lisa at The Bearfoot Baker at an 85-90 degree angle. Lisa’s detailed blog post explains how at that angle the air from the airbrush gun pushes down on the stencil and prevents it from lifting up. So having learned from these tutorials, I’m anxious to give it another go. Stay tuned as another airbrush post is coming soon and with better results … fingers crossed!

Pear Cookies
Pear Shortbread Cookies
Royal Icing for outlining and flooding tinted with Wilton Ivory
Disposable piping bags & couplers
Squeeze bottles
Wilton Decorating Tip #2
Stencils (Fall Leaves, Tear Drops, Chevron, Harlequin, Quatrefoil)
AmeriColor Airbrush Colors (Orange, Yellow, Green, Copper, Brown)
Airbrush Kit or Wilton Color Mist

Outline cookie with #2 tip in ivory icing.

Flood cookie with ivory icing. Let dry overnight.

Place stencil on the cookie.
Using an airbrush, spray airbrush color onto the cookie.
Gently lift stencil. Let dry 45 minutes.
(These two copper cookies turned out perfectly)




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Homemade pie … is there anything better? Apple, cherry, blueberry, lemon, pecan. Can anyone out there make a good pie crust? I can’t. The best pie crust I ever made was my first many years ago and it was beginners luck, as I have not made a good pie crust since. I am not alone judging from the ready-made pie crusts and pre-made pie dough on the grocery shelves. The Contessa on The Food Network makes her pie crust in the food processor and she makes it look easy. I’ve tried her method and still no success. The secret to a good pie crust is practice and most of us roll out dough once a year at Thanksgiving. So the holidays are rolling around and as your thoughts turn to pie, do you find yourself cringing at the thought of rolling out pie dough?  Here is an alternative to pie and a superb autumn dessert for your Thanksgiving table. 

This Cinnamon Spice Cake is a nice combination of my favorite baking spices … cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves with brown sugar and cake flour for a delicate confection. This cake is topped with Vanilla Buttercream Frosting. If you prefer, add a touch of orange or gold food coloring to reflect the colors of the season.

Cinnamon Spice Cake
2½ cups Softasilk Cake Flour (or 2-1/3 cups Flour), sifted
1 cup Sugar
1 tsp Baking Soda
1½ tsp Cinnamon
3/4 tsp Nutmeg
3/4 tsp Cloves
1 tsp Salt
1 cup Brown Sugar
2/3 cup Crisco Shortening
1 cup Buttermilk
3 Eggs
Buttermilk Substitute: Add one cup of milk plus one tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar.

Grease and flour two 9-inch cake pans
Mix Flour, Sugar, Baking Soda, Cinnamon, Nutmeg Cloves and Salt.
Add Brown Sugar, Shortening and Buttermilk. Add Eggs.
Pour into cake pans. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes until cake tester comes out clean.
For cupcakes bake at 400 for 18-20 minutes. Makes 24 cupcakes.
[This recipe is the New Duchess Spice Cake in the 1950 Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook]

White Buttercream Icing
4½ cups Confectioner’s Sugar, sifted
1/2 cup Crisco Shortening
5-10 tbsp Cream or Milk
2¼ Tsp Vanilla (use clear extract for white frosting)

Place all ingredients in a bowl. Mix well. Add small amounts of milk if icing is too stiff.
[This recipe is from the 1950 Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook]



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It’s everywhere! Or at least it should be. We normally think of romantic love when the word L-O-V-E comes to mind, but what is greater than a parent’s love for a child. It is never-ending and the most enduring form of love. Parents ... those special persons who teach, guide, forgive and love no matter what. Love of siblings ranks up there too. They share our DNA, the playmates with whom we squabbled from toddler through teen years. They know us best, hide our deepest secrets and stand up for us against the bullies. Siblings … they may tend to be unappreciated yet are always there in the tough times. Grandparents ... who dote on us and enlighten with family stories. Aunts, uncles, cousins ... forever friends with whom we share a tight bond. Nieces and nephews ... who we love like our own. Love of friends and neighbors. Then the most personal … the love of our life. A love that is overtly expressed in the form of a ring signifying eternal love.

Which brings me to this week’s cookie. What could be sweeter than sugar-coated diamonds. These are perfect for wedding, bridal shower or proposal.

Diamond Cookies
Diamond Shortbread Cookies
Royal Icing for outlining and flooding tinted Light Pink with Wilton Pink and Wilton Brown
Disposable piping bags & couplers
Squeeze bottles
Wilton Decorating Tip #2
Meringue Powder
Pink Sanding Sugar

Outline cookie with #2 tip in pink icing.

Flood cookie in pink icing. Let dry overnight.

Mix 1 tsp meringue powder and 1½ tsp water. Stir until smooth.

Using a paintbrush apply to cookie.
Sprinkle with pink sanding sugar. Gently shake off excess. Let dry 45 minutes.

Outline detail on cookie with #2 tip (or #3 tip) in pink outline icing. Let dry overnight.





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